February 24, 2011

Robonaut 2 blasts off aboard the space shuttle Discovery

Robonaut 2, NASA's first human-like robotic astronaut is scheduled to be aboard the space shuttle Discovery when it blasts off into outer space today from Cape Canaveral, Florida. A joint project between NASA and General Motors, Robonaut 2 is designed to assist human astronauts aboard the International Space Station. The primary task of R2 (as it is called) is to demonstrate to engineers on the ground how humanoid robots behave in space. It is hoped that a humanoid robot may someday venture outside of the space station and assist it's human counterparts in performing maintenance and repair work, as well as assist in conducting scientific observations.

Robot Experiments, a new middle-school title from Enslow Publishers, shows how to build and program a robot. Written by Dr. Ed Sobey, it includes information on what's inside a robot, to sounds, controlling LEDs, and adding touch sensors.

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